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Sponsored feature: presented by Living Arts Centre
The GTA’s food and entertainment scene stretches way beyond downtown Toronto. A short drive to Mississauga offers access to numerous activities for groups, couples and solo adventurers – including world-class concert venues and noteworthy restaurants that are well worth the trip.
You don’t need a car to get to many of these destinations, as GO Transit‘s Milton Line and local busses will help you get around. To make the most of your visit, plan out a day-long combination of an activity, dinner and a show.
Most Torontonians have probably heard of Square One Mall, which features over 320 shops including anchor stores like Holt Renfrew, Zara and The Bay, but there are also neighbourhoods in Mississauga that are great for browsing or hunting down a new fashion accessory. Located alongside the Credit River, Streetsville has a quaint, historic village feel to it and plays host to annual festivals and events like Mississauga’s Santa Claus Parade and the Bread and Honey Festival.
Port Credit lines the shore of Lake Ontario and has its own walkable shopping district, with local businesses like Cabin Goods and Grooming barbershop and Ric’s Recollections vinyl store. But if you’re mostly looking for solid deals on name-brand jeans or eyewear, the Dixie Outlet Mall is likely your best bet.
The escape room phenomena is more popular than ever, and each new business that launches in Mississauga is finding a unique spin on how to keep a group of friends or co-workers entertained under fun, ticking-clock scenarios. Often used as team-building exercises, escape rooms use fictional scenarios to test collaborative, observational and deductive skills.
Sometimes these scenarios are grounded in real-world environments, like Escape From the 6‘s Wild West- or firefighter-themed rooms, but they can also take on the intensity and creepiness of a horror movie, such as No Way Out’s 13 Sedah Avenue experience.
Celebrating its 20th year as Mississauga’s premiere performance venue, Living Arts Centre features over 225,000 square feet of stage, studio and exhibition space. The events here range from musical acts and theatre to community arts courses and kids’ camps. Some of the artists playing the coming weeks and months include Buffy Sainte Marie, Gordon Lightfoot, Lemon Bucket Orchestra and crowd-pleasing visual acts like Machine de Cirque.
Hammerson Hall, the main theatre space, also hosts the Mississauga Symphony Orchestra for performances that can blend pop culture appeal with classic composers. Visit the Living Arts Centre Digital Residency for listings, contests, all-access features and more. (Note: parking at the LAC is free after 6pm and on weekends.)
Whether you need to work through some stress or just keep your zombie apocalypse skills sharp, Mississauga’s the place to safely practice throwing axes and firing arrows. Bad Axe Throwing is a member of the World Axe Throwing League (yes, there is a World Axe Throwing League) and features pricing for both groups and walk-ins. There are also league nights for some season-length competition.
For more head-to-head action, you can book an Archery Terminal session at the Invader Sportsplex. Two teams compete to see who can advance into the other’s territory and hit a series of game-winning targets, all while avoiding taking a (very soft-tipped) arrow to the knee. Players wear face masks and all gear is provided by Archery Terminal.
Any serious Toronto foodie knows that some of the best dining experiences require a bit of travel time. As home to numerous diverse communities of newcomers and longtime residents, Mississauga’s culinary scene has a massive range of flavours and styles. For theatre- and concert-goers, you can’t get much more convenient than the Living Arts Centre’s Live Restaurant.
Thai food fans will enjoy Henry and Anne Duong’s curries and cocktails at Twin Fish, while those looking for Eastern Europe cuisine should visit Croatia Restaurant for a plate of Orada (sea bream) with a shot of Sljivovica (fruit brandy). Craft beer cravings can also be met at Union Social Eatery, where you can get Amsterdam and Junction Craft Brewing on tap.
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